I work at a very stressful job...and getting through my work week intact, is my only focus most of the time. I am approaching the end of my career, and I want to make it to the finish on both feet.
When I became a nurse 39 years ago (OMG!) the rules were simple. You were expected to keep bedsides clean, give the right medication at the right time to the right person using the right route and the right dose. Residents were loved and treated with dignity. All in all, life was simple.
The rules have changed, folks. Residents now have rights. (AS IF they didn't back then!) They have the right to bathe if they wish...or not. They have the right to leave the building if they are deemed "capable". (If they are not yet deemed incapable, are an alcoholic, and choose go uptown, buy a bottle of whiskey and down it there, vomit on themselves, and cannot physically manoevre their way home or safely cross the railway tracks...well...they have the right to ask someone to call the staff to come and get them.) They have the right to strike out and curse at their caregivers. If they refuse to do as asked, they are immediately allowed to make this decision...whether in their best interest...or not.
Abuse? Not at our home. Staff are abused on a daily basis by some...both physically and verbally...but are you aware that if a staff member should "slip" and call a resident by an endearing term...such as "Honey" or "Sweetheart" without that resident's permission, that this is deemed abusive?
The Ministry and Police must be called if a resident...confused or not...makes contact with another resident. How would you like to be the family member who gets a call stating that mom has scratched another resident and that the Police have been called?
Injury inflicted on a nurse...bruise or breaks or cuts...are not reportable crimes.
This is only a small picture of what goes on when I go to work every day...and yes...retirement is looking mighty good. In the "mean" time, I puddle through, and spend a lot of time reading the following. It soothes my soul. Thanks Max.
Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant, they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love, for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is perennial as the grass.
Take kindly to the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.Max Ehrmann c.1920